"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice

Blind Faith


Alex Rodriguez is the subject of Scott Price’s SI cover story this week:

Rodriguez, once seen as baseabll’s great clean hope, is now viewed as hopelessly dirty.

Others have come back from such stigma: Mark McGwire is the hitting coach for the Dodgers; Jason Giambi and Andy Pettitte, old teammates and admitted users of PEDS, are treated these days as elder statesmen. Rodriguez figures to be different–and knows it–but last week maintained the front of a blissed-out Candide. He insissted that he doesn’t wonder, Why me?

“I never say that,” Rodriguez said. “But maybe there are a couple of chapters where I can become that person again. I’m not giving up. I have tremendous faith, and hopefully there’s a couple more chapters to this book. And hopefully there’s a happy ending somewhere. I have faith.


Asked, last week, if he understood Cashman’s famously profane rip, Rodriguez shot back, “Do you understand it?”

Yes. Because Cashman knows; Rodriguez’s gift, his unprecedented completeness, was never really his; it’s called a gift for reason. Sports is a collective of time as well as talent. Six generations of baseball players and fans, billions of dollars worth of stadia and TV time, an infinity of minor and major leageurs working for untold lifetimes–all of it combined to create the game, the numbers, the interest and the hothouse environment in which Alex Rodriguez was going to be the best.

People care so much about sports greatness because, deep down, they know that it’s a reflection; something there belongs to them. We gave Rodriguez his chance. We urged him not to waste it. Cashman knows, better than anyone: We hate when we make so big a mistake.

Here’s more from Price at SI.com.


1 RagingTartabull   ~  Jul 31, 2013 11:00 am

oy vey

2 monkeypants   ~  Jul 31, 2013 11:06 am

To be fair, Cashman seems like kind of a dick, too.

3 Chyll Will   ~  Jul 31, 2013 11:10 am

[2] Yeah, but if you had to deal with what he has had to deal with for so many years, would you even wonder why? The man who preceded him (whom I still think was better) bowed out early for health reasons rather than stick it out with George and Tampa and Co. If Cashman has had a stronger constitution in comparison, the job has certainly had a strong effect in other ways as well.

4 RagingTartabull   ~  Jul 31, 2013 11:17 am

(2,3) Cashman was wrong to take it out-of-house, there's no way around it. But after 9 years of this, non-stop, at some point you're just gonna lose it. It was bound to happen eventually, he's only human.

5 monkeypants   ~  Jul 31, 2013 11:36 am

But I also think Cashman is, or has become, more of a dick in general, not just about A-Rod. That includes nasty comments about players and fans (like his quip about Ben Francisco earlier this year) to his extramarital activities. I simply don't find Cashman all that likeable. In some ways, he and A-Rod deserve each other.

6 bp1   ~  Jul 31, 2013 11:52 am

[5] Agreed. He does not seem to toe the party line anymore when overruled by his bosses - he was pretty public about not wanting either Soriano - Rafael or Alfonso. I gotta say - he deserves a STFU every now and then from Hal, too, you know? He's as much an employee as A-Rod. What good can there be from a GM saying publicly that he did not support a particular personnel move, other than try to build his own street cred? His constant referring to players as "assets" is also a little creepy.

Yeah - dick. After The Boss passed, he's come out of his shell and it hasn't been very pretty.

7 rbj   ~  Jul 31, 2013 11:55 am

So are we watching Bronx Zoo Part II, PED Bugaloo?

8 ms october   ~  Jul 31, 2013 11:58 am

[5] agreed. his dickness goes beyond this. when he told jeter to shop himself around during jeter's last contract it wasn't necessary and done with spite. this behavior seems like who he really is.

9 Chyll Will   ~  Jul 31, 2013 11:59 am

I've said that Cash has been going further and further off the rails the last few years, but from what I've seen from him before I can't say from an objective point that it's his nature. He's more wrong now than he's ever been about more things baseball and personal, but to me it points to a deeper problem with the collective that's running the organization. Could it be the chickens coming home to roost in certain ways? Maybe, but time is telling.

10 MSM35   ~  Jul 31, 2013 11:59 am

Would you guys prefer a GM who answers no questions? If he tells the truth he is a bad employee and if he lies he's a ____. I have no interest in his personal life. He held this organization together thru the madness of King George. For that he can stay forever.

11 Chyll Will   ~  Jul 31, 2013 12:03 pm

[7] Only if Ice T is in it!

12 monkeypants   ~  Jul 31, 2013 12:04 pm

[7] Hopefully. Because that sequel would end with Girardi and Ichiro getting into a fistfight in the dugout, and the Yankees making a big run to win the division and, eventually, the World Series!

13 Chyll Will   ~  Jul 31, 2013 12:10 pm

[10] But now that King George is dead, does that glue not seem to be melting? His personal life has nothing to do with it because it doesn't effect the Yankees business directly in ways we can see. Could be an indicator of other things that do, though. If Cash's personal problem involved him or his kids and crack, would there not be loud concern about whether that comes into the office at any point? I'm thinking of Andy Reid and the Eagles, which ended up with a change of scenery at the very least.

14 Chyll Will   ~  Jul 31, 2013 12:17 pm

[12] I wanna know who's Tim Teufel, Danny Heep and JCVD in that scenario...

15 Chyll Will   ~  Jul 31, 2013 12:19 pm

[14] Oops, Van Damme was in the first movie >;)

16 Alex Belth   ~  Jul 31, 2013 12:24 pm

Cashman may be a dick but he's a general manager. Isn't that part of job requirement?

17 MSM35   ~  Jul 31, 2013 12:24 pm

Gee Chyll unless you know something that the rest of don't know it seems that Cash is doing his job. No team could survive this number of injuries. The fact that they are on the fringe of contention is remarkable.
A couple of years ago I passed Cashman getting off a plane in Tampa. He was down for the draft. Due to some free agent signings, which he opposed, he had no picks and the Rays had nine in the first hundred. You pay a price for this that international money cannot make up.

18 Sliced Bread   ~  Jul 31, 2013 12:31 pm

16) I think you're required to be a douche as General Manager, but being a dick is a skill. But I could have it backwards.

19 Chyll Will   ~  Jul 31, 2013 12:33 pm

[17] I'm afraid you missed my gist. I'm not saying Cash has deeper issues than anyone knows, I'm saying what we do know may or may not indicate a bigger problem with the whole organization. Cashman is doing his job, but it seems to me (and perhaps me alone?) that he's struggling more and more with the components, which might have something to do with him being perceived as "more of a dick" as others say. I'm actually defending him in some ways, though his record speaks for itself.

20 monkeypants   ~  Jul 31, 2013 12:40 pm

[17] Due to some free agent signings, which he opposed...

I have to admit, I'm getting tired of this old song (though for years I was guilty of singing it). Cashman seems to have built up this aura where every time there is a bad move, it's blamed on the Steinbrenners or the Tampa Faction or whatever, and whenever there is a good signing, Cash is a genius. It was somewhat plausible before, but since his supposed liberation (when was that? 2007 or so?), I'm not buying it any more.

21 Sliced Bread   ~  Jul 31, 2013 12:41 pm

18) douche and dick aren't interchangeble. The difference is intent.
Like the difference between manslaughter and murder.
A douche is more like a jackass. Somebody who does dickish things but can't help themselves. It's in their DNA.
A dick is more like an asshole. Somebody who willfully commits douchebaggery.
So the question for the class is this: where on the douche to dick spectrum do we find Major League GMs?

22 monkeypants   ~  Jul 31, 2013 12:42 pm

[16] Being GM requires making jokes like that you keep around a player like Ben Francisco (strongly implied by context, a bad player) just to piss off the fans? That sort of dickishness is in no way relevant to the job of GM.

23 Chyll Will   ~  Jul 31, 2013 1:04 pm

[21] That's hard to say, too. Some GMs lean douche, some dick. I do think that the douches don't tend to stick around as long if it signifies their competence. But to add to that, while being a dick may be a job requirement (at times, mind you), it shouldn't have to be the defining quality of a GM.

24 BobbyB   ~  Jul 31, 2013 2:22 pm

They're both dicks. A-Rod and Cash-man. It will be a great day when they both go.

25 randym77   ~  Jul 31, 2013 6:32 pm

Looks like A-Rod may be going soon.

MLB prepared to ban A-Rod for life, suspend eight others

Commissioner Bud Selig is prepared to levy a lifetime suspension on New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez, while suspending about eight others before the weekend, two people with knowledge of the negotiations told USA TODAY Sports.

The people were unauthorized to speak publicly because no announcement is expected until Thursday or Friday.

26 cult of basebaal   ~  Jul 31, 2013 7:26 pm

[25] Sits back, pops corn ...

Frankly, I hope Arod fights this tooth and hoof until the arbiter smacks down Tzar Bud like the over-weening git he is, but still finds recourse to suspend Alex for the approximate time given to everyone else, so that Alex can come back next year, but never be effective again, booed by everyone, everywhere he plays, but that no matter how bad it gets, he never quits so that the Yankees are forced, at some point, to cut him and eat every last penny remaining on his contract.

They all deserve the worst and each other ...

27 Alex Belth   ~  Jul 31, 2013 8:16 pm

Fun thread. 26) I like your thinking on this.

28 Sliced Bread   ~  Jul 31, 2013 8:52 pm

In the third act of my "movie of the week," ARod calls a press conference to cop to doping, and then puts on a powerpoint presentation in which he reveals indisputable photographic evidence showing Bud Selig himself injecting the 2004 and 2007 Red Sox with steroids. Selig skulks into the room, admits his wrongdoing, and begs the baseball community for forgiveness. Wiping away tears, he asks rhetorically, "What would Mo do?"
The opening strains of Enter Sandman begin to blare, and out of nowhere Mo himself enters the scene.
Mo speaks: "Steroids are whack. Don't do them. People make mistakes. So let's dance."
And they do.
Scene. Le fin. Credits.

29 knuckles   ~  Jul 31, 2013 9:22 pm

[26] agreed.
Much as I'd like to see the Yankees out from under his contract, that is a personnel mistake that the Yankee organization made. Whereas this wildly inconsistent overreaching witch hunt tha MLB is undertaking is yet more proof that the game is overseen by a cabal of petty crooks.

30 randym77   ~  Jul 31, 2013 9:28 pm

I think A-Rod deserves a longer suspension than the rest, at least if the obstruction allegations are true. That's a whole different level of wrongdoing, and MLB cannot let it go.

31 cult of basebaal   ~  Jul 31, 2013 10:05 pm

Eh, from my vantage point, it's MLB with a whole level of wrongdoing, and, frankly, neither Alex Rodriguez, nor the MLBPA can, or, should, let it go.

Alex Rodriguez isn't a multi-billion dollar, global conglomerate leveraging its size and monetary influence to pressure democratically elected institutions in the justice process to pressure citizens with the threat of criminal prosecution to force them to co-operate with a purely corporate investigation. Alex Rodriguez also didn't leverage his position as a multi-billion dollar, global conglomerate to file waves of harassing lawsuits against citizens to force them to co-operate with their extra-judicial investigation or be financially ruined in their attempts to defend their rights.

32 kenboyer made me cry   ~  Jul 31, 2013 10:52 pm

[31] Well said.

33 randym77   ~  Aug 1, 2013 5:34 am

Yeah, well...it looks like the MLBPA is going to go along with it.

That's what I find most fascinating about this. The players' reaction is completely different now. No more, "He was just trying to help the team." They're downright angry about the 'roiders in their midst. That's why the union isn't doing anything. The players are the union, and the players appear to be fed up with juicers.

34 randym77   ~  Aug 1, 2013 5:50 am

Source: A-Rod reps talk settlement

After Alex Rodriguez's lawyer said his client would fight any discipline from Major League Baseball, a source familiar with discussions told ESPN's "Outside the Lines" Wednesday that A-Rod's representatives are now negotiating a possible settlement that could result in a lengthy suspension.

35 Boatzilla   ~  Aug 1, 2013 8:25 am

[21] Wow. That so accurate, it's admirable. Great analysis of two closely related put-downs.

Cash will be fired soon or not re-upped soon. I think.

Where is Kenny Williams these days?

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"This ain't football. We do this every day."
--Earl Weaver